New York Lotto is a regional lottery draw operated by the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC). State residents voted to approve the lottery’s formation in November 1966, with the first New York Lotto draw hosted on 17 June 1967. As with many national lotteries, the decision to launch a state lottery was driven by a desire to generate state funding, in this case for public education. In fact during the fiscal year 14-15, the lottery donated an impressive $3.11 billion to support education in the state of New York. Draws are held regularly on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 11:21pm (local time).
New York Lotto requires each player to pick six numbers from one to 59 on their lottery ticket. Six numbers will then be picked at random during the draw, after which a bonus ball is drawn. These rules will be familiar to players who enter the UK National Lottery, as both lotteries are identical in terms of mechanics.
Rules dictate that each player will enter two game panels at minimum. However, the entry price of $1 for two lines of numbers is much better value in comparison with other US regional lotteries. The California SuperLotto Plus, for example, charges $1 for a single line of numbers.
The New York Lotto features a $2 million starting jackpot which is carried over to the next week if not won. Just a quick look over the lottery’s past results shows how the jackpot can rise past as much as $42 million following weeks of rollovers.
There are six tiers of prizes but it will take all six of the main numbers to win the overall jackpot. Another distinctive aspect of the prize tiers is how exclusively the bonus number is used. In essence, the only time the bonus ball comes into play is when five numbers are matched – it has no effect on matches of six, four or three numbers. When combined with five matches, a bonus ball match will trigger the payout of the second prize.
You can win a cash prize with these matches (highest to lowest):
New York Lotto tickets can be purchased from over 17,000 licensed retailers throughout the state. Players who wish to buy their tickets in person can find their closest retailer by using the operator’s Lottery Locator. State residents also have the choice of buying their tickets online utilising the New York Lottery’s subscription centre, which also provides access to the Cash2Life and Mega Millions draws.
There is now the possibility for non-state residents to enter New York’s main lottery using an online concierge that will send out staff to purchase tickets on their behalf. Before doing this, take time to verify the trustworthiness of your chosen concierge. There are good lottery concierges on the market, but there is always a risk involved so try to seek out player reviews before committing.
There are multiple options for checking numbers. State residents can watch the draws live on Wednesdays and Saturdays and those who do not watch the draw can read the results in state newspapers or by checking at their local retailer. The more convenient option however, is to go to the New York Lotto homepage to see the results published immediately after the latest draw.
New York Lottery is one of the more reasonable operators for claiming prizes. Players are not subject to 90-day claiming periods like with other lotteries. In this case, winners can claim their winnings up to a year after a draw has been held. This provides a little extra comfort for instances when players forget to claim their winnings immediately afterwards.
For players who buy their tickets in person, the operator advises that a ticket’s back is signed for added protection in case a winner is lost. When claiming, you can do so at your local retailer for prizes worth up to $600. Anything above $600 will require you to visit a customer service centre. Alternatively, a claim form can be acquired from your local retailer or downloaded online before posting to:
New York Lottery,P.O. Box 7533,Schenectady,NY 12301 – 7533
Playing online is much simpler in that if you win, funds are automatically credited to your account, while cheques will be sent out for larger prizes. Check with your lottery concierge for claiming winnings if you live outside of New York – each concierge will have its own system in place.